Many people who suffer from osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and similar conditions take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDS. The problem with NSAIDs is that they can cause a host of side effects, including gastrointestinal bleeding. This is why some people turn to the health benefits of glucosamine as an alternative.
Glucosamine can be found in over-the-counter supplements, either by itself or combined with another supplement, such as MSM or chondroitin. Studies show that glucosamine sulfate can stimulate the production of proteins that aid in repairing the connective tissue around the joints, thereby relieving pain and inflammation. However, it is important to understand that the glucosamine benefits are not universal.
According to the Mayo Clinic, the benefits of glucosamine including lowering the pain associated with mild arthritis and similar conditions, particularly that of the knee. It has also proven beneficial for some patients with inflammatory bowel disease, leg pain and pain associated with rehabilitation, because of its anti-inflammatory properties.
While the glucosamine health benefits might vary significantly from patient to patient, research suggests that the drug is not harmful. So even if it doesn’t relieve joint pain or have any other beneficial consequences, it is unlikely to cause any damage if taken in the correct dosage.
Additionally, research suggests that the benefits of glucosamine might be different depending on whether the drug is ingested orally or injected. For some conditions, such as osteoarthritis, some physicians might offer glucosamine injections for patients who cannot-or do not want to-take pain medication for their discomfort.
It is important, if you hope to enjoy glucosamine benefits, that you purchase it from a reliable manufacturer or dealer. Look for brands you trust in stores where you frequently shop for the best results, as these supplements can be different depending on how and where you buy them.
Additionally, the benefits of glucosamine are not so profound that sufferers of joint pain can stop other forms of therapy. It is important to listen to your physician and take his or her recommendations seriously. You might be prescribed pain medication, anti-inflammatories, muscle relaxers or other drugs that will assist in glucosamine’s job.
It is also necessary to maintain any physical therapy or exercise your doctor recommends. Low impact exercises have proven vastly beneficial for people with joint pain, and it can only make the glucosamine benefits more pronounced.
And, of course, if you suffer any negative side effects in addition to the health benefits of glucosamine, you might need to discontinue use. Some people have experienced nausea, diarrhea, skin rashes and headaches in conjunction with glucosamine, according to Joint-Pain.com.